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Kent Tracy and Josh Gandy - photo Gina Clugston

Cat Benatar Goes Up A Tree, Local Heroes Get Her Down

NORTH FORK – These guys are my heroes! Advanced Tree & Property Services. These two awesome gentlemen came to my house and rescued my daughter’s beloved cat from an oak tree where she had been stranded for nearly three days.

When “Cat Benatar” disappeared on Tuesday morning, we assumed the worst – that she had been eaten by something and would never come home.

My daughter was inconsolable. But before giving up on Cat B, I walked the property calling her name, and finally heard the tiniest meow from about 40 feet up in an oak tree. We figured she would come down when she got hungry. Didn’t happen.

So the night passed with temps in the mid-30s, and the next day we spent hours trying to coax the cat down, to no avail. She only went higher up the tree. My daughter tried a tall ladder, putting food on the ground, and spent hours sitting down by the tree trying to convince Ms. Benatar that life would be better at ground level.

Another cold night passed, and then came Thursday, with rain and snow. I tried some local tree companies, but no one had a climber available.

So I posted our dilemma on the SNO Facebook page trying to find a climber, and though many people said the cat would come down on her own, the threat of hypothermia, dehydration, or having something eat her was too much to take.

Then Diane Mello suggested I call Kent Tracy and Josh Grandy at Advanced Tree Service. With another cold night closing in, I made the call.

Kent Tracy listened to my tale of woe, however during the conversation, his phone battery went dead and I lost the call. Since it was after 6 p.m., I figured this drama would continue into Friday.

Luckily for me, Kent had written down my address, and about 30 minutes later, he and his climber Josh Gandy pulled into my driveway. I was shocked!

Josh had already put in a full day of work and it was nearly dark, but when he heard about the cat in distress, he insisted this was something he could – and was more than willing to do.

Josh strapped on his climbing gear and made his way through the poison oak that covered the ground. The stuff was even in the tree.

He quickly climbed the tree and was able to get Cat B to come over to him, but as soon as he got hold of her she began to yowl like nothing I’ve ever heard, peed all over him, and scratched every bit of skin she could lay a claw on. But still he somehow hung onto that crazed animal, and got her to the ground.

That’s when I foolishly tried to be nice and hold her. She ripped my arm open, clawed my chest and bit my hand before running off into the woods. Minutes later, she was at the house, fed and hydrated, and finally warm.

Now I know many have said that professional arborists like Josh and Kent don’t find dead cats in or below trees. So they must come down. I truly believe, and they agree, that is not always the case. Some may become dehydrated and disoriented and at some point fall down, and/or are eaten – either before or after. So whatever the conventional wisdom, we are just eternally grateful to these fine men for going above and beyond.

Thank you so much to Kent Tracy of Advanced Tree and Property Services. Give him a call for your tree work at 559-658-0194. He is licensed, bonded and insured.

Kent and his wife Tricia recently opened the Love Cafe, on Highway 41 in Oakhurst, just south of the intersection of Highway 49. Kent says Tricia is an impassioned animal lover, and they often find themselves late to various destinations because she will insist he pull over to help some animal – or person – along the road.

Thank you so much to Josh Gandy, who suffered bites and scratches and possibly poison oak. You are one tough guy!

https://www.facebook.com/AdvancedTreeandPropertyService/

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Sierra News Online

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